Absa Cape Epic launches 2013 route

2013 Absa Cape Epic, MTB, South Africa, cycling
The peloton during the 2012 Absa Cape Epic (AAP)

The 2013 Absa Cape Epic mountain bike race organisers announced a demanding route that will cover 698km and 15650m of climbing.

The seven-stage South African event will begin with a new 23km prologue route beginning at Meerendal Wine Estate and will finish at Lourensford, 45km from Cape Town.

Organisers have opted to shake up the event with a number of new locations announced and other locations only having each hosted the event only once over the past nine years.

Heading into its 10th year, route designers were aiming to find a balance between challenging terrain, exciting single-track, and scenic beauty in their quest for the ultimate mountain biking experience.

A strong elite men's field was also announced for the event including defending champions Christoph Sauser (SWI) and South African Burry Stander.

Last year's winning pair will be tested by a number of Swiss riders including reigning world champion and overall UCI MTB World Cup winner Nino Schurter and the Fluckiger brothers, Lukas and Mathias.

Unconfirmed is Olympic gold medallist Jaroslav Kulhavy (CZE) who may be at the start line unless he confirms a rumoured move to the professional road ranks for 2013.

2013 Absa Cape Epic route
Prologue Meerendal to Meerendal 23 km 700m climbing
Stage 1 Citrusdal to Citrusdal 103 km 2500m climbing
Stage 2 Citrusdal to Saronsberg 145 km 2350m climbing
Stage 3 Saronsberg to Saronsberg 92 km 1950m climbing
Stage 4 Saronsberg to Wellington 106 km 1900m climbing
Stage 5 Wellington to Wellington 75 km 1800m climbing
Stage 6 Wellington to Stellenbosch 100 km 1950m climbing
Stage 7 Stellenbosch to Lourensford 54 km 1500m climbing

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